GASTONIA, N.C. (WBTV) – They often come along when we least expect it, seemingly unassuming moments that beg for a second glance. Sandra Ledford had one of those experiences recently inside a Gastonia store.
“We were in there shopping, looking through the Bibles. I picked that one up, was looking at it. I went to lay it down and that’s when the DVD fell out,” Ledford said.
Two weeks ago, while browsing through the aisles of Ollie’s in Gastonia something caught Ledford’s eye.
“At first, I thought it might be something included in the book. Until I looked at it and saw the writing on it and saw that it was a personal DVD,” Ledford said.
A name and date, as well as a birth length and weight, were scribbled by a stranger in permanent marker on the front of the disk.
“I looked at it and I told my sister, Donna, this belongs to somebody. I came so close to putting it back and laying it down,” Ledford said.
But, Ledford told WBTV, something supernatural stopped her. So she decided to take the DVD home and quickly discovered her find was full of meaningful memories of a tiny baby who only lived a matter of hours.
“Immediately, I said, the only thing I knew to do was put it on Facebook,” Ledford said.
A Facebook post searching for the family who had only a short time with their child was a long shot – but one seen by Constance Merck, baby Braylen’s mother.
“She said, that’s mine! And my heart just, it just jumped for joy,” Ledford said.
Merck said the disk held some of the only memories they thought they had left of Braylen, who passed away from kidney complications not long after he was born.
“We have no record of him being alive. There’s no birth certificate, there’s no death certificate. There’s nothing. The only thing we have are the pictures and the disk,” Merck said.
A few weeks ago, Merck says she bought the Bible at Ollies and put the DVD inside, only to return it without remembering the book’s precious cargo.
“I put it in there because I always put important papers, obituaries, things like that in a Bible. The very next day we went back to get it out. She went in. found the exact bible and it wasn’t in there,” Merck said.
She thought those precious memories were gone forever.
“I hoped that someone would find that and would do that, but I really just assumed it was gone,” Merck said.
But now, those reflections have been returned to their rightful owner, an occasion these woman call more than a coincidence.
“There’s a reason she found it,” Merck said. “Yeah. I feel like God had a reason that day.”
Copyright 2015 WBTV. All rights reserved.